Some Nintendo Switch games may end up costing more than their versions on other platforms going forward
It's not just Rime.
Last week, it was reported that Rime, the upcoming puzzle exploration game by Tequila Works is going to cost $10 more on the Nintendo Switch than the other platforms. It seems a lot of gamers have been giving the developer crap over it, but as it turns out, their anger may be misplaced. According to Eurogamer, the cost of manufacturing a Nintendo Switch cartridge is actually higher than it is to produce an Xbox One or PS4 Blu-Ray Disc.
As a result, developers and publishers are feeling like they have to compensate for the added manufacturing cost by charging more for the game. This is compounded by the fact that the price of the game in the Nintendo eShop must match the price of the physical version on a store shelf. Furthermore, the hard drive on the Nintendo Switch is not a particularly big one anyway, coming in at a meager 32 GBs, so going all digital isn't something the console is properly built for out of the box. You can purchase additional SD cards for added space, but obviously, that equals more money on the part of the Switch owner.
As Eurogamer also points out, Nintendo Switch cartridges come in different memory sizes, 1GB, 2GB, 4GB, 8GB, 16GB, and 32GB. And it goes without saying that the higher the memory size, the more expensive the cartridge. What this means is that developers, especially indie or the low end of AAA, may have to start thinking about the benefits of producing Switch versions of their games versus the cost of developing them. If they don't expect to ship a certain number, does it really make sense to invest in a platform that will ultimately net them a loss?
What this could end up meaning that is that some of these mid to low tier developers might be forced to release their games digital-only for Nintendo Switch, and even then, the Switch's market is far from established. This will certainly be something to keep an eye on going forward.